February Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our February meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 15, 2011, in the Fiesta Room of the Hallmark Apartments in Alpine.

Writing Assignment: Love Lost, Then Found Again, 250-500 word limit.

Speaker: Phyllis Musgrove will speak about “Who Says Writers Heads are Blocked?”

Refreshments: Petei Guth will provide refreshments for the February meeting.


From the Desk of our President

Our new year got off to a great start, and we welcomed several newcomers and visitors to our January meeting in Fort Davis. We enjoyed an outstanding program from Jackie Siglin.

Despite February’s roaring in like a lion, our spring retreat planning committee finalized plans for what I think will be an outstanding 20th anniversary conference. I hope many of you can attend.

Phyllis Musgrove



2011 Spring Writers Retreat UPDATE

Plans are coming together fast and furious for our 2011 Spring Writers Retreat on April 8, 9, and 10.

The retreat will be held again this year at the Paisano Baptist Encampment west of Alpine.

For more information, see our Retreat Overview.


Minutes from January Meeting

Download minutes here


Demystifying Writers’ Demons One at a Time

One by One –  by Joan Upton Hall

Bad/ badly

o Verbs “feel,” “smell,” and “taste” can be linking verbs, requiring the predicate adjective, “bad.” But they can also be action verbs modified by the adverb, “badly.”

Correct: “I feel bad about this.”

Misused: “I feel badly about this.” (Something wrong with your tactile senses?)

Correct (but not recommended): “Since severing his nerves, he feels badly. (impaired tactile senses)

Correct: “Un-refrigerated, three-day old beef smells bad.”

Misused: “The beef smells badly.” (Huh! A live animal with sinus congestion?)

Correct: “To me, artichoke tastes bad.”

Misused: “Artichoke tastes badly.” (Of course! It has no taste buds.)

o Any action verb should be modified by the adverb, “badly,” meaning “very much.”

Correct: “I want chocolate badly.” or “The story needed editing badly.”

OR “The story was badly in need of editing.” (Here it modifies the adjective prepositional phrase, “in need.”)

Do demons bedevil your writing? Similar, confusing words? Grammar, punctuation, or capitalization rules? “The Demystifier” will clear up the mystery (primary reference unless otherwise noted: Garner, Bryan A. Dictionary of Modern American Usage. N.Y.: Oxford University Press). Address questions and comments to freelance editor, Joan Upton Hall at: moc.l1508384478oa@ll1508384478aHumj1508384478. More problems like the above are demystified in the booklet, 50 Writers’ Tips. Find more at http://www.JoanUptonHall.com/books.htm.


Final Note from the Editor:

Have news? Toot your horn, clang your bell, raise your roof! Tell us your news and stories – or writing news in general, such as publications you would recommend, contests, book events, etc. Send your Braggin’ Rights and Trail Bits to gro.s1508384478retir1508384478wliar1508384478tniat1508384478nuoms1508384478axet@1508384478wtmtk1508384478sa1508384478.

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